Is there a way to use Time Machine to wirelessly back up my MacBook onto an external hard drive using Airport Extreme?

QA AirPort Extreme Base Station

QA AirPort Extreme Base Station

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3 Answers from the Community

  • Best Answer:

    Yes, I do that with an iBook and a MacBook.

    Follow these steps;
    a) attach the external drive directly to your computer, open Time Machine Preferences
    b) click on the "Change Disk" tab and select the external drive
    c) have Time Machine do the initial backup
    d) setup your Extreme
    e) attach the external drive to the USB port
    f) go back into Time Machine Preferences, select the "Change Disk" tab and select the external drive again (now it should show up a blue coloured icon)

    On the two computers I have set up automatic Login so that as soon as they are powered up, the external hard drive mounts and Time Machine backs up.

    doubledark AT adam DOT com DOT au

  • This is NOT OFFICALLY SUPPORTED by Apple, but that is pretty well hidden.

    It works well for some, not so reliably for some, not at all for others.

    This forum won't let me post a link to the Apple Technical article, so here's how to find it:

    Go to (slash) support, click Mac, then Mac OSX v10.6 Snow Leopard, then select Time Machine, then Other Time Machine articles. The article in question should appear on the right, titled "Time Machine doesn't back up to AirPort Extreme Airport Disks.

    If you have a problem with this configuration and call AppleCare, you'll get very little help, if any.

  • You can actually connect one with usb and it will automatically recognize it and work wirelessly